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AWA Championship Wrestling 09-17-85

Taped from St. Paul, MN

Airdate: September 17, 1985 (taped 09/08)

Attendance: 4,000

Hosted by Larry Nelson, Ron Trongard, & Verne Gagne

Can Hennig, Hall, and Greg overcome the vicious combination of Bockwinkel, Stevens, and Zbyszko? What happens when Slaughter challenges Flair for the NWA World title? Can Zumhofe defeat Roberts, or will the wily Freebird prevail? Let’s find out!

Sorry, folks. No commercials this week. Perhaps I can present you with a peace offering.

Nelson opens the program by highlighting the AWA wrestlers will be seen tonight.

Match 1 (non-title): AWA British Empire champion Billy Robinson versus Randy Barber


Rating: DUD

Summary: Showcase match for Robinson.

Promo airs for Super Clash ’85 on 9/28 in Chicago, IL.

Match 2: Buddy “Jack” Roberts versus Buck “Rock’n’Roll” Zumhofe


Rating: **½

Summary: Another close victory for Zumhofe. Roberts had plenty of tries to put him away yet almost lost.

Nelson interviews Boris Zhukov and Chris Markoff. For those unaware, Markoff began his career in 1964, but he and Zhukov refuse to discuss their involvement in Slaughter’s match at the Meadowlands.

IN THIS CORNER: Nelson and Zbyszko interview Nick Bockwinkel. Prior to Bockwinkel’s joining the broadcast, footage of Bockwinkel versus Martel is shown. Believe it or not, Zbyszko shakes Bockwinkel’s hand. They discuss hypocrisy as well as teaming together against the Road Warriors.

Match 3 for the NWA World title: “Nature Boy” Ric Flair (champion) versus Sergeant Slaughter


Rating: **

Summary: Too short to give a true rating, but I’m betting Flair gave the Meadowlands faithful their money’s worth before the screwjob finish.

After the match, Zhukov punks Zanini OUT COLD and drills Slaughter with a clothesline. He piledrives Slaughter, but Zanini tries to stop him. Zhukov blasts him again and continues to bomb Slaughter with fists. Before Slaughter can rebound, Flair assists Zhukov against Slaughter. The cavalry from the babyface locker room arrives to chase them away and rescue Slaughter. Call a medic!

Nelson interviews Slaughter who refers to Zhukov as “scum, slime, maggot.” He subtly refers to leaving the WWF because Hogan “not giving (him) a match” yet vows “war” against Zhukov.

MAT CLASSIC: AWA World tag team champions the Road Warriors (w/ “Precious” Paul Ellering) versus King Kong Bundy & Jerry Blackwell


Rating: ***

Summary: Heel shenanigans by the Road Warriors enabled them to steal a victory from the buffet blitzers.

Nelson interviews “Gorgeous” Jimmy Garvin and “Mr. Electricity” Steve Regal with Precious. According to Nelson, they will face the Road Warriors on next week’s episode. Nonetheless, they refer to Bundy and Blackwell as “fat and stupid.” To close the interview, they besmirch Prince.

Catch the AWA on tour!

  1. 9/22 in Green Bay, WI (main event: Martel/Blackwell/Von Raschke versus the Freebirds)
  2. 9/26 in Atlantic City, NJ
  3. 9/28 in Chicago, IL for Super Clash ’85 (Flair versus Magnum T.A. & more)
  4. 9/29 in St. Paul, MN (Road Warriors versus Garvin/Regal)
  5. 10/2 in Denver, CO (Slaughter versus Zhukov)
  6. 10/4 in Los Angeles, CA (Bockwinkel/Stevens versus Von Raschke/Blackwell)
  7. 10/6 in Janesville, WI (Zhukov versus Rob Rechsteiner…never heard of him)
  8. 10/11 in Ft. Wayne, IN
  9. 10/12 in Indianapolis, IN (Zbyszko versus Hall)
  10. 10/15 in Anchorage, AK (Martel versus Hayes)
  11. 10/15 in Salt Lake City, UT (Bockwinkel versus Greg Gagne)

Match 5 (six-man): Nick Bockwinkel, Ray “The Crippler” Stevens, & Larry Zbyszko versus Curt Hennig, Scott Hall, & Greg Gagne (w/ Tom Zenk)


Rating: **½

Summary: The youth surpass the veterans while beating them at their own game. I would have enjoyed more chicanery by the heels to rile up the St. Paul faithful more, but the match was nevertheless entertaining.

Before Bockwinkel exits the ring, he sends the injured Zenk flying from the apron down to the concrete floor.

Nelson interviews Stan “The Lariat” Hansen who disses “yankee” towns like Chicago, Milwaukee, and Minneapolis. He dismisses Flair, recognizes Rick Martel as the World champion, and “wants it.”

Next week, Blackwell faces Terry “Bam Bam” Gordy. Also, the Road Warriors encounter Garvin/Regal.

Conclusion: The six-man match shows the direction the AWA is headed with Hennig, Hall, and Greg going forward. Hansen’s putting the AWA over the NWA gives the AWA some chutzpah in the world of pro wrestling. Also, the “war” between Slaughter and Zhukov got sufficient emphasis while I got my first, and hopefully last, look at Billy Robinson. Check this out also for the Road Warriors match.

TV Rating: NONE

Stay tuned for AWA 09-24-85!

Comments? Suggestions? Send them to me at rsg@rockstargary.com and follow me on Twitter (@rockstargary202).

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